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Howard University

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Describe the students at your school.

Students at Howard University are generally wonderful people. Howard is a school of mostly Black individuals, but the diversity is just as good as a mixed university. Students come from different, states, areas, financial backgrounds, social backgrounds, and have grown up with different mindsets, so the diversity of the school is great; Howard proves that not all people from the same ethnic background are the same. To be perfectly honest I do not feel like any student would feel out of place at Howard, although it is majority Black, there are many different groups of people that any person can find a place to fit in on campus, minorities on Howard’s campus are accepted the same as any other student, but it may take a little time for some students to get used to. Howard is a school full of fashion obsessed individuals, students are constantly judged for what they wear, so it is safe to say you can wear anything on Howard’s campus, and you just have to take things that other people say with a grain of salt and continue to be you. Although Howard students are wonderful, intelligent and strong, many students are very closed minded when it comes to the people they interact with. Many students are focused on the idea of having “cool” friends, fashionable friends, and many students on the campus do not accept other ethnicities when they first meet them. It is not rare for Howard students who are down to earth and cultured to venture out in DC and explore friendships at the other local colleges and universities. I am a person who likes to have different kinds of friends, so I do not take too much notice to the cliques that form around campus. Howard does represent many different financial backgrounds, but in my opinion, the middle class is represented greatly. Being Black and middle class is a great accomplishment, and many of the students at Howard are very material and object obsessed. Some students are in college just to accomplish a certain financial and social status, while others are there to make a change and affect the world in a positive way. With this said, Howard students are very aware and politically and socially active. Most students on the campus are left winged individuals, which makes for rich human and civil rights based individuals at the institution.

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a) My experiences have been great as I associate with many of them on campus. The diversity on a black campus is just as fruitful as on a mixed campus. The variety within our own race is abundant; we tend to lose sight of that. b) No student would feel out of place at Howard. Everyone finds the "group" that makes them feel at home. c) Students wear whatever they feel like. It's college, what'd you expect? d) Yes. e) First table is full of jocks. Second table is full of "pretty girls". Third table is full of the fashionably inclined. Fourth table is full of a mix of everyday people. f) There is no general group from a certain spot. However, as a Chicago native, there are A WHOLE BUNCH OF US who attend Howard.(Smiley Face) g) The financial background is mixed, but there are numerous spoiled brats whose parents pay for everything and you can see it in their value system, if they have one. The average student comes from a very average household, most of which have to work to make ends meet. But the mix is just that, a fairly distributed one. h) Not enough students are politically aware and we certainly aren't as active as we should be. i) I won't label the student body as the diversity in opinion and political perspective is so huge. j) Business students do, of course. Possibly other students too, but I'm not sure.

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Howard students tend to be very aggressive in their defense of Black culture and history. Howard students can never be accused of not knowing their history. Like you would find at any HBCU, Howard students tend to be conservative on issues like abortion and gay rights. Howard is tolerant of LGBT students, but I wouldn't call Howard "gay-friendly." One thing I love about Howard students is how lively the atmosphere is on campus. Often, you will find a DJ playing the latest songs in the dining hall and students dancing throughout. Howard students are politically aware, but not to the extent that Georgetown or George Washington students are. Most Howard students wouldn't know that Israel launched a major offensive against Palestine last winter. Some people don't even know how many officials there are in the United States Senate. Howard students are generally focused on the career they will pursue and much less on building their intellectual bona fides. I would say if you want classmates who talk about texts outside of class and who are passionate about human rights, you will feel out of place because most of the people here are about fashion, dating, and money.

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Most of the student population at Howard is African-American. However, we are increasingly becoming more diverse with foreign exchange students and "minorities." You will find that many of the students place a high value on fashion as a form of expression. We all come from different backgrounds and experiences, and you are able to be yourself and find groups and organizations that appeal to your individual interests. Our students are some of the most politically aware that you will find. We join protests, fight for causes, and readily express our opinions on various issues. You will also find that we are hardworking and are all striving to be the best in our relative career fields. If you're not competitive before you come here, you will certainly develop your drive while you're here. Seeing so many students chasing after their dreams is inspiring and makes you realize why you wake up everyday. We're all after something great. You start going after what you really want while you're in college.

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The student culture at Howard is unique. There are alot of organizations to be apart of, but dedication is not very strong. The biggest presence are the Greeks (National Pan-Hellenic Council) and a premium is placed on some of their members. The non-conformist student would feel the most out of place because of the emphasis to fit in on campus. There are cliques like every other campus, but most people have a wide range of friends. You might see people of similar organizations (Greek, sports, band, etc.) or academic programs (theatre arts, business, allied health, etc) around each other more often. Howard is known for its fashion, so there is absolutely no pajama wearing to class. The culture will make you want to look your best at all times. It may seem as though many students come from wealthy families, but many more are from middle-class or low-income families.

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There are so many students on our campus who see themselves as the next celebrity, or the next big business owner. Sometimes it gets crazy because by senior year people really put themselves on celebrity status, however, its cool because it encourages competition and keeps people wanting to strive to be the best. Most people that go to Howard come from different socio-economic backgrounds; you have your son's and daughters of doctors and lawyers who are here on legacy scholarships, but you also have your small town people who are here to see what the big city is like for the first time. Its a very diverse university with so many different personalities. There are over 150 different organizations that allow students to find there niche and be the best at it; but at the end of the day, you still have to work to be on top.

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Howard is an HBCU, and a majority of the student population is black. However there is alot of diversity amongst the students. Students hail from all over the US, and all over the world. There are students from varying socio-economic backgrounds, as well as different religious affiliation. Howard is one of the few HBCU's that has an LGBT student organization. There are times where people from different backgrounds might conflict, but Howard immerses you in the diversity, which makes it a learning experience if you allow it open your mind. Howard students tend to politically aware, to different degrees. There are so many different view points that you are almost always guarenteed a fair debate amongst colleagues, Howard is a social enviroment, and students have a plethora of ways to interact and get to know each other.

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At Howard, everyone is accepted. That is one thing that I can definitely say about Howard. Howard is a big fashion school so students can be seen on the yard wearing the latest styles or their own unique style. There are many different clubs, groups, and organizations for different people including the NAACP, the LGBT community and many many more. Howard's student body is comprised of people from all over the world. There are a lot of students from the Dominican Republic, Africa, Jamaica, and of course all over the United States from California to Michigan to Georgia. The largest state clubs are the Georgia Club, Chicago Peoples Union, the California Club, and the Michigan Club.

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So Howard university students, particularly the women, are ALWAYS dressed to impress. It doesn't matter if they are going to class or to the club, it has to be hair done, nails done, everything did. Me personally, I'll wear sweats to class before anything else but hey...that's me. There's a heavy presence of students from places like California (oakland, l.a.), Illinois (Chicago), and New York. Everyone isn't the nicest person you will meet but you just have to go out and meet people and feel them out so you can build relationships with people who you will see for the next four or so years.

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I get the impression that most Howard students are middle class to upper middle class. The fact that it's an HBCU changes the whole racial dynamic, but there are cultural tensions between American students and international students (who are primarily from the Caribbean and Africa)at times. I think there's a niche for everyone here, or at least room to create one. Howard students generally consider themselves politically active and aware, but some consider us complacent (see a Washington Post piece by Courtland Milloy regarding "soul food Thursday" and a visit by Laura Bush).

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